An NGO, Prince Children Foundation, on Saturday urged children to positively make use of Information Communication Technology, ICT, in diverse ways to enhance their creativity.
The Founder of Prince Children Foundation, Mr Adegoke Fadayiro, gave the advice during the graduation ceremony of its members at Digital Arts Summer Academy, Ogba, Lagos.
The foundation in collaboration with Digital Arts Summer Academy trained over 30 less privileged children on Digital Arts, Illustrations and General ICT.
Mr Fadayiro said the training was a way of engaging children by awakening their creativity using the computer.
He expressed gratitude to the academy for imparting new skills to the children at no cost to the foundation.
“I am surprised at the level of creativity the children displayed in just three weeks. Imagine what they will be able to achieve if more time was given.
“We hope to continue on this path to ensure they continue to grow and perfect what they have learned,” he said.
The Head of Programmes, West Africa Network for Peace Building, WANEP, Nigeria, Mrs Patience Ikpeh-Obaulo, commended the foundation for giving its members the opportunity to learn the positive use of ICT at a very tender age.
“This foundation has used this medium to catch the younger generation by teaching them how to use the computer to draw pictures and tell stories of their own imagination.
“The world is getting more globalised and children around the world are making use of ICT in diverse ways. The question we need to ask is: are they using it positively or negatively?
“So this initiative is a right step in the right direction and a laudable one,” she said.
She also said WANEP was looking forward to partnering with Prince Children Foundation to groom more children to know how to embrace the culture of peace and to impart their innate skills to others.
“WANEP Nigeria has implemented the Peace Education Programme in over 700 schools in six states — Delta, Rivers, Enugu, Ogun and Lagos and over 2,000 children have benefited from it.
“Based on the receptiveness of the project among key educational stakeholders, WANEP aims to integrate peace education into the curricula of primary and post-primary schools at the federal level.
“This will enable the younger generation to adopt techniques that will foster peace in their relationship with others, thus building a more united and peaceful society,” she said.
Mrs Omosefe Ogbebor, a facilitator at the academy, said she was optimistic that the children would grow to become talented animators and designers based on the level of creativity displayed.
“During the course of the training, many of them were able to create designs and illustrations and were able to translate them into storytelling.
“I believe this training has awakened their innate creativity and helped them realize that they can become anything they want if they pursue it.
“Aside training them on the basics of digital arts, we also taught them how to build their confidence using the three magic words “I can”, “I will’’ and “I must,” she said.
Mr Ogbebor advised parents to be actively involved in the growth of their children and help them to discover their skills to enable them impact the society positively.
Also, a co-founder of Digital Arts Academy, Mr Raphael Malik, said the collaboration was in fulfillment of the academy’s passion for impacting the next generation in the use of ICT.
He said he was looking forward to working with other organisations to help less privileged children to develop digital skills that would prepare them for the future.
“We would like to promote different aspects of life using the creative industry and the creativity ability of the children to express their understanding of human rights, peace and gender issues,” he said.
Aliya Nureni, a 12-year-old beneficiary, thanked Prince Foundation and Digital Arts Academy for the opportunity to learn ICT at an early age.
“I have been able to learn how to draw on the computer using brushes and tools such as paint brush, soft eraser, full bucket, light pen and others,” she said.
NAN reports that over 30 children between the ages of nine and 14 benefited from the three weeks training and were awarded certificates of completion.